Why Trees Sparkle with Water

Hey, everyone! On February 13th, I saw the trees sparkle with melted snow and it inspired me to write this story. Here are some other stories: http://lilliandarnell.com/2018/02/02/how-rain-came-to-be-natures-glitter/http://lilliandarnell.com/2016/07/20/a-happy-world/,  and http://lilliandarnell.com/2017/03/09/angel-island/. I hope you enjoy!

Once long ago, there lived a family of trees in a faraway land of Tree Land. The trees names were Pine, Cherry, Apple, and Fire (also known as Delphine). They all lived happily in their home which was called the Palace of Fruit. One day,  an invitation arrived at the Palace of Fruit.

The invitation had said that the Ice King was having a tree ball to find the perfect tree for him to decorate. After the family of trees read the invitation, they knew that they had to have the most beautiful dress ever.

So Cherry and Apple went to Fashionable Blooms Store to look for a gorgeous dress. Meanwhile, Pine and Fire went to Fairytale Blossoms Store for a pretty dress. Cherry and Apple realized that they were in the wrong store so they went to Fairytale Blossoms Store instead.

While Cherry and Apple were at Fairytale Blossoms Store, Pine and Fire also had realized that they had been in the wrong store. So Pine and Fire went to Fashionable Blooms Store instead.

Cherry and Apple found a gorgeous sparkly dress aisle made from ice and snow all made from the Ice King. Cherry found a stunning glittery pink dress while Apple found an identical dress except it was a beautiful neon red color.

Pine and Fire found a flaming nutty dress aisle made from pinecones and fires made by the Fire King and Pine King. Fire found a flaming hot red dress while Pine found a pointy brown pine needle dress. Of course, Fire thought it looked a little dull so Fire sprinkled a bit of pinecone dust with glitter on it.

After Cherry and Apple paid for their dresses, they headed to Tree Lane. As they left, Fire and Pine paid for their dresses and they headed to Tree Lane as well to meet up at Olive’s Treet Diner to eat a celebratory meal together.

At the diner, the family of trees chose a peppermint bark salad with a lemon flavored fruit as a side. The family of trees talked about their dresses and Pine & Fire had admitted that they didn’t care about the Ice King. They did care for Pine King and Fire King who also happened to have a ball the same night.

So the family of trees split up for that big night but the big night wasn’t until the end of the month. The month flew by and the big night came, the family of trees got ready together but they split up so they could go to their balls.

That night when the Ice King saw Cherry and Apple in their stunning dresses, he asked to have an icy tree dance with them both separately. Of course, when the ball came to an end, the Ice King couldn’t decide who to decorate so he chose both Cherry and Apple.

Naturally Apple and Cherry were very surprised when he announced that Apple and Cherry were to live and be decorated at his home. Apple and Cherry glanced at each other wondering if Pine and Fire were having the same reaction at their ball.

Meanwhile, when the Fire King and Pine King saw Pine and Fire, the Fire King asked to have a flaming tree dance with Fire while the Pine King asked to have a pointy tree dance with Pine. When the ball was over, Fire King announced that Fire got to stay with him. While the Pine King announced that Pine got to stay with him.

Fire and Pine asked if they could go tell Apple and Cherry the good news. The Fire King and Pine King both agreed. Meanwhile Apple and Cherry were heading to Cherry’s Treat Palace so they could tell the good news to Cherry and Apple.

Fire and Pine had already been at Cherry’s Treat Palace for an hour when Apple and Cherry showed up. Once Cherry and Apple sat down, Cherry and Apple announced that they get to be decorated and stay with the Ice King.

After Cherry and Apple said their news, Fire announced her news and Pine also shared her news. They congratulated each other and went on their way. So if you see any trees sparkling with water, that is Cherry or Apple.

A bare tree with snow in the background.

A bare tree with snow in the background.

Learn About Christmas

Gallery

Tweet Hello, everyone! You might want to know more about Christmas. Thank you for visiting my blog! Christmas is my favorite holiday. In Argentina, the weather is almost always warm at Christmas. Preparations for Christmas begin very early in December … Continue reading

Instagram Update from Winter 2015 to Spring 2016

Hey, everyone! Here’s the newest Instagram update from this winter to this spring. Enjoy this Instagram update!

“Beautiful days bring precious times outdoors.” – Lillian

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American Tree Sparrows

Hi there! My mother, Camilla suggested that I write a series of posts about birds on my blog since I’ve been talking about them and learning about them. Please let me know if you have any bird books, CDs, or a website you’d recommend! Here is the part about American Tree Sparrows.

American Tree Sparrows are small, round-headed birds that often fluff out their feathers, making their plump bodies look even chubbier. Like other sparrows, they have fairly small bills and long, thin tails. Their color pattern is a rusty cap and rusty (not black) eyeline on a gray head, a streaked brown back, and a smooth gray to buff breast in both male and female American Tree Sparrows give an overall impression of reddish-brown and gray. A dark smudge in the center of the unstreaked breast is common.

Small flocks of American Tree Sparrows hop about on the ground, scrabbling for grass and weed seeds, calling back and forth with a soft, musical twitter that might make you twitter, sing, or dance. A single American Tree Sparrow may perch in the open top of goldenrod stalks or shrubs, or on low tree branches. Look for small flocks of American Tree Sparrows in the winter in weedy fields with hedgerows or shrubs, along forest edges, or near marshes except for Reno, NV. They readily visit backyards, especially if there’s a seed feeder.

American Tree Sparrows breed in the far north and are hardly seen south of northern Canada in the summer. 4-6, usually 5. Pale bluish or greenish, with brownish spotting often concentrated at larger end. Incubation is by female, 11-13 days; male visits nest often, but does not incubate. Young: Both parents feed nestlings. Young leave nest at age 8-10 days, when flight feathers not yet fully grown.

Parents may lure them away from nest by offering food. Young are able to fly at about 14-15 days after hatching; parents continue to feed them for about 2 more weeks. 1 brood per season, but may attempt to renest if 1st attempt fails. Diet in the winter is almost entirely seeds, from grasses, weeds, and other plants; also a few insects and berries.

In the summer, they eat mostly insects and other small invertebrates, plus a few seeds. Young are fed mostly insects. Pairs form shortly after birds arrive on breeding grounds. Male actively defends territory, chasing away other members of same species.

Nest site is on or near ground, in grass clumps beneath shrubs. Sometimes on hummock in open tundra; rarely up to 4′ above ground in willow or spruce. Nest is an open cup of twigs, grasses, moss, lined with fine grass and with feathers (usually ptarmigan feathers). Female builds nest in about 7 days.

All wintering areas are well to the south of breeding areas. Migrates relatively late in fall and early in spring. Apparently, migrates mainly at night. On average, females winter somewhat farther south than males.

The American Tree Sparrow is a small sparrow with a long notched tail. The adult has a streaked back and wings, with two white wing bars, but is otherwise unstreaked, while the juvenile is streaky overall. Adults have an unstreaked gray-brown breast and belly, with a dark spot in the center. The tail, rump, and nape of the neck are all solid gray.

The upper mandible of the bill is dark and the lower is yellow. The head is mostly gray, with a rufous crown and eye-line. American tree sparrows (Spizella arborea) breed throughout almost all of Alaska, the Yukon and Northwest territories, the very north of Manitoba and Ontario, all of Labrador, and in northern Quebec. Their winter range includes a very small part of southern Canada and all of the United States except for the western most 250 miles, the southern most 450 miles and all of Florida.

American tree sparrows usually breed near the tree line in open scrubby areas with willows, birches, alder thickets or stunted spruce. They may also breed in open tundra with scattered shrubs, often near lakes or bogs. They spend the winter in open forests, gardens, fields, and marshes. Baumgartner followed birds for the first 22 days of development.

Order of hatching was not dependent on the order of laying. Earlier hatched birds took the lead in development. During the nine and one-half days in the nest, the four feather tracts of the birds (dorsal, ventral, alar, caudal) go from completely bare to the back covered, lower belly slightly bare, wings 2/3 grown, and tail still a stub, and the birds grow from 1.62 gm to 16.7 gm, while their length goes from 33 mm to 75 mm during the same period. They lose 1.5 gm the first day out of the egg but have gained 3 gm by day 21 (Baumgartner, 1968).

On the second day after hatching the young were able to stretch for food. On the fourth day their eyes were half open, after the fifth day, wide open. The first sounds were made on the fifth day but were very soft. Fear was acquired between 7.5 and 8 days as demonstrated by their raucous calls when touched by humans.

During the first 12 days of the fledgling period (which lasts until about a month after leaving the nest in (Spizella arborea) the birds showed a steady increase in both tail length (14-47mm) and wing length (46-68mm). At the end of the first 21 days the wings were still slightly shorter and the tails about 2/3 the length of mature birds. A tree sparrow was observed to fly 30 or 40 ft fifteen days after hatching, and a little before one month after hatching, the birds could fly all around their territory. American tree sparrows are monogamous (one male mates with one female).

Males and females form breeding pairs after they arrive at the breeding sites in the spring. Both males and female sing to attract a mate. Females become excited when males come to sing nearby. They call back to the male, making a “wehy” sound.

Males may show off for females by spreading their wings and fluttering them or darting to the ground in front of the female, then flying back up to a perch. American tree sparrows breed between May and September. They raise one brood of chicks each year. The females builds the nest alone.

The nests are built on the ground out of moss, grasses, bark and twigs. They are lined with fine grass and feathers.The female then lays about 5 eggs. She lays one egg each day.

She incubates the eggs for 10 to 14 days and broods the chicks after they hatch. The chicks are altricial (helpless) when they hatch, so they rely on the female to protect them and keep them warm. Both parents feed the chicks until 2 to 3 weeks after the chicks leave the nest (called fledging). The young fledge from the nest about 9 days after hatching.

In late summer, the families join larger flocks. We do not know when young American tree sparrows begin breeding.
American tree sparrows breed once per year. Females incubate the eggs and brood the chicks after they hatch.

Both parents feed the chicks until they are about 22 days old. The oldest known American tree sparrow lived at least 10 years and 9 months. Most American tree sparrows probably live about 2.3 to 3.4 years. American tree sparrows are migratory.

Though they are usually active during the day (called diurnal), they migrate at night. American tree sparrows are territorial during the breeding season. Males sing to claim territories and they defend their territories from others. Females occasionally chase intruders too.

American tree sparrows do not defend winter territories. During the winter, they form large flocks that forage together. Within these flocks, some birds are dominant over other birds. American tree sparrows move by hopping on the ground and on branches, and by flying.

They do not swim or dive, but they do bath frequently. They roost alone trees or shrubs, haystacks, cornfields, and marshes. In the winter, they might take shelter together under the snow. American tree sparrows are omnivorous; they eat many different seeds, berries and insects.

During the winter, American tree sparrows mainly eat grass and weed seeds. During the summer, they mostly eat insects and spiders. American tree sparrows search for food among plants on the ground and the branches and twigs of shrubs and trees. In Massachusetts, they are often seen in flocks, feeding at bird feeders.

American tree sparrows need to drink a lot of water each day. During the winter, they eat snow in order to get enough water. Known predators of American tree sparrows include northern goshawks, sharp-shinned hawks, screech owls, pygmy owls, Cooper’s hawks, American kestrels, weasels, foxes, and red squirrels. When approached by humans, American tree sparrows give a rapid series of “tset” calls.

It is unknown how American tree sparrows respond to other potential predators. American tree sparrows are very important members of the food chain. They eat many weed seeds and insects and spiders, and they are an important food source for their predators.

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Sources I Used:

http://www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/Mountain_Bluebird/id

http://www.audubon.org/field-guide/bird/mountain-bluebird

http://www.nhptv.org/natureworks/mountainbluebird.htm

http://www.statesymbolsusa.org/symbol-official-item/idaho/state-bird/mountain-bluebird

http://identify.whatbird.com/obj/581/overview/Mountain_Bluebird.aspx

http://www.mbr-pwrc.usgs.gov/infocenter/i7680id.html

http://www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/california_quail/id

http://www.nhptv.org/natureworks/californiaquail.htm

http://www.audubon.org/field-guide/bird/california-quail

http://dwrcdc.nr.utah.gov/rsgis2/search/Display.asp?FlNm=callcali

http://www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/American_Tree_Sparrow/id

http://www.audubon.org/field-guide/bird/american-tree-sparrow

http://birdweb.org/birdweb/bird/american_tree_sparrow

http://www.biokids.umich.edu/critters/Spizella_arborea/

http://www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/Song_Sparrow/id

http://www.audubon.org/field-guide/bird/song-sparrow

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Books I Recommend: Snow Wonder by Charles Ghigna

Hi there! This is my 21st book recommendation list. Just a friendly reminder: Authors who have found one of their books in my 21 book recommendation lists, just me know. Enjoy, yourself!

1. Snow Wonderby Charles Ghigna
2. Louisa May’s Battle by Kathleen Krull
3. Liberty’s Voiceby Erica Silverman
4. The Legend of the Candy Caneby Lori Walburg
5. Wizards Don’t Wear Graduation Gownsby Debbie Dadey and Marcia Thorton Jones
6. The Hidden Goldby Sarah Masters Buckey
7. The Crystal Ballby Jacqueline Dembar Greene
8. Danger at the Zooby Kathleen Ernest
9. Kit Saves The Dayby Valerie Tripp
10. Secrets in the Hillsby Kathleen Ernest
11. Some Good Newsby Cynthia
Rylant
12. Summer Partyby Cynthia Rylant
13. Kit’s Surpriseby Valerie Tripp
14. Josefina’s Surpriseby Valerie Tripp
15. Samantha’s Surpriseby Maxine Rose Schur
16. Troublemakerby Andrew Clements
17. The Mystery of the Mixed-up Zooby Gertrude Chandler Warner
18. The Hurricane Mysteryby Gertrude Chandler Warner
19. A Week in the Woodsby Andrew Clements
20. Changes for Josefinaby Valerie Tripp
21. The Mystery In The Caveby Gertrude Chandler Warner
22. The Animal Shelter Mysteryby Gertrude Chandler Warner
23. The Year the Swallows Came Earlyby Kathryn Fitzmaurice
24. Thanks to Josefina by Valerie Tripp

(amazon affiliates)

Snowy’s Birthday

Happy Birthday! Who wants To come:

Halo 1

When you sleep, I’m here

Don’t be afraid, I am near

Watching over you with lots of love

Your guardian angel from up above!

Halo 2

Little angel up above

Guard me with your special love

Make sure that you will always be

By my side and close to me!

Wallace

Castles rise from misty glens

Shielding bonds of warrior men

Wearing tartan of their clan

Red, green, and a little tan!

Ty 2K

Red, yellow, green, and blue

Let’s have some fun me and you

So join the party, and let’s all say “Happy New Millennium,” from Ty 2K!

The End

All good things come to an end

It’s been fun for everyone

Peace and hope are never gone

Love you all and say,”So long!”

B.B Bear

The birthday beanie was made for you

Hope your wishes and dreams come true

Be happy today and tomorrow too

Let’s all celebrate the whole year through!

Snow Alert (From Lillian Darnell Star Gazette)

Winter Storm: In Reno and Sparks

For those who live in Reno, NV look below for details or if your just looking than just look below anyhow.

Airplane Delays will be in factor

Driving is very poor

Flu or a cold will also be factored

Tips: Check at your school (website) at reno or sparks.

 

News Flash From Lillian Darnell Star Gazette


Hi y’all! Aren’t you glad Lillian Darnell Star Gazette came out a few days? But it was late. And here’s a suggestion: why don’t you use LDSG that’s the initials and I’ll start using those initials a little late then usual. Anyway here is the Weather News Flash Warning From AccuWeather.com and here at Sparks and Reno, Nevada or click on the link then type Sparks, NV and this is what it will say: Winter Storm Warning In Effect From 1:00 AM To 10:00 AM PST Monday …

The National Weather Service in Reno Has Issued A Winter Storm  Warning For Heavy Snow… Which Is In Effect From 1:00 Am To 10:00 AM PST Monday . The Winter  Weather Advisory Will Be No Longer In Effect by then.

* Timing: Snow Will Move Into Western Nevada This Evening And Increase Overnight . The Heaviest Snow Will Occur From 4:00 AM To 10 AM Monday.

* Snow Accumulations: 5 To 10 Inches Above 5000 Feet … 3 To 6 Inches Of Heavy Wet Snow On Valley Floors . 

* Snow Levels: Near Valley Floors Tonight … Then Rising 4500 To 5000 Feet Late Monday Morning.

* Impacts: Dangerous Travel Conditions With Slick And Icy Roads And Low Visibility During The Monday Morning Commute. Chain Restrictions Over Geiger Grade … Interstate 80 And Highways 50 And 395.

Precautionary/Preparedness Actions…

Conditions Can Deteriorate Rapidly During Winter Storms … Slow Down And Allow Extra Time When Traveling. Carry Tire Chains… Food…Water… Blankets And A Flashlight In Your Car In Case Of An Emergency.